On This Day

Historical Events in 1962

Events 1 - 200 of 741

  • Jan 1 Beatles' Decca Records audition is unsuccessful - they are told “guitar groups are on the way out..."
  • Jan 1 Rwanda granted internal self-government by Belgium
  • Jan 1 Western Samoa gains independence from New Zealand Susuga Malietoa Tanumafili II becomes co-chief of Western Samoa
  • Jan 1 United States Navy SEALs established.
  • Jan 1 48th Rose Bowl: #6 Minnesota beats #16 UCLA, 21-3
  • Jan 1 28th Sugar Bowl: #1 Alabama beats #9 Arkansas, 10-3`
  • Jan 1 28th Orange Bowl: #4 LSU beats #7 Colorado, 25-7
  • Jan 2 Nighttime version of "Password" with Allen Ludden premieres on CBS
  • Jan 3 Ground is broken for the Houston Astrodome
  • Jan 4 1st automated (unmanned) subway train in New York City

Music History

Jan 5 Tony Sheridan & Beatles record "My Bonnie" & "The Saints", produced by Bert Kaempfert, in Hamburg, Germany

  • Jan 7 1st AFL All Star Game, Balboa Stadium, San Diego, California: Western Division beats Eastern Division, 47-27; MVP Cotton Davidson, Dallas Texans, QB

Assassination Attempt

Jan 7 Assassination attempt fails on Indonesian President Sukarno

  • Jan 7 Bollingen Prize for poetry awarded to John Hall Wheelock [1]
  • Jan 8 Dutch express train crashes into slow commuter train, 93 die (Neth)

Sports History

Jan 8 21 year old future Hall of Fame golfer Jack Nicklaus makes his first professional appearance; tied 50th in Los Angeles Open

  • Jan 9 Mister M (Dr X) beats Verne Gagne in Minn, to become NWA champ
  • Jan 9 NFL prohibits grabbing of face masks
  • Jan 9 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Jan 10 Eruptions on Mount Huascaran in Peru destroy 7 villages & kill 3,500
  • Jan 11 Landslide at dormant volcano Huascaran in Peru kills an estimated 4,000

Agent Orange in Vietnam

Jan 12 Operation Ranch Hand begins, a US Air Force operation to spray South Vietnamese forests with defoliants such as Agent Orange

  • Jan 12 Operation Chopper begins, America's first combat mission in the Vietnam War
  • Jan 13 "Do Re Mi" closes at St James Theater NYC after 400 performances

Sports History

Jan 13 Philadelphia center Wilt Chamberlain scores 73 points in Warriors' 135-117 win over Chicago Packers; at the time, most points scored in NBA regulation game, and remains tied for 3rd-highest total

The Twist Dance Craze

Jan 13 Chubby Checker's song "The Twist", credited with starting the Twist dance craze, goes to #1 in the charts two years after first reaching number one spot

NFL Pro Bowl

Jan 14 12th NFL Pro Bowl, LA Memorial Coliseum: Western Conference beats Eastern Conference, 31-30; MVPs: Jim Brown, Cleveland Browns, RB; Henry Jordan, Green Bay Packers, DT

  • Jan 15 Dutch & Indonesian navy encounter in Etna Bay New Guinea

Film & TV History

Jan 15 Coco the Clown [Nicolai Poliakoff] is the subject of the BBC TV programme "This is Your Life"

  • Jan 15 50th Australian Championships Women's Tennis: Margaret Smith beats Jan Lehane O'Neill in the final for 3rd straight year 6-0, 6-2

Australian Men's Tennis Open

Jan 15 50th Australian Championships Men's Tennis: Rod Laver takes the 1st leg of his 1st Grand Slam; beats fellow Queenslander Roy Emerson 8-6, 0-6, 6-4, 6-4

  • Jan 15 Derveni Papyrus rediscovered - Europe's oldest surviving manuscript from c. 340 B.C., commentary on a Orphic poem, found in a tomb in Derveni, Northern Greece [1]
  • Jan 16 Shooting begins on "Dr No" the first James Bond film
  • Jan 16 Suit accuses NYC Board of Education uses "racial quotas"

NBA All-Star Game

Jan 16 12th NBA All-Star Game, St. Louis Arena, St. Louis, Mo: West beats East, 150-130; MVP: Bob Pettit, St. Louis Hawks, C; All-Star record 27 rebounds

Historic Event

Jan 17 NASA civilian pilot Neil Armstrong takes X-15 to 40,690m

  • Jan 17 Roy Harris' 8th Symphony, premieres in San Francisco
  • Jan 18 Southern University, Baton Rouge, closed due to demonstrations
  • Jan 18 US begins spraying foliage in Vietnam to reveal Viet Cong guerrillas
  • Jan 18 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Jan 20 "Kean" closes at Broadway Theater NYC after 92 performances

Historic Event

Jan 21 JFK arrives in Uruguay

  • Jan 21 Snow falls in San Francisco
  • Jan 22 The Organization of American States suspends Cuba's membership.

Historic Event

Jan 23 British intelligence officer Kim Philby defects to USSR

  • Jan 23 Libya, Morocco, Algeria & Tunisia plan to form United Arab Maghreb
  • Jan 23 Film "Jules et Jim", based on the novel by Henri-Pierre Roché, directed by François Truffaut and starring Jeanne Moreau is released
  • Jan 24 28 refugees escape from East to West Germany

Contract of Interest

Jan 24 Brian Epstein signs management contract with the Beatles

Hall of Fame

Jan 24 Jackie Robinson is 1st African American elected to Baseball's Hall of Fame. Bob Feller is also elected.

Music History

Jan 26 Bishop Burke of Buffalo Catholic dioceses declares Chubby Checker's "The Twist" to be impure and bans it from all Catholic schools

  • Jan 26 Canadian Marine Service renamed Coast Guard
  • Jan 26 David Diamond's 7th Symphony, premieres in Philadelphia
  • Jan 26 US launches Ranger 3, misses Moon by 22,000-mi (37,000-km)
  • Jan 27 "Family Affair" opens at Billy Rose Theater NYC for 65 performances
  • Jan 28 Johanne Relleke gets stung by bees 2,443 times in Rhodesia & survives

Historic Event

Jan 30 UN General Assembly censures Portugal over Angola

  • Jan 30 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Jan 30 2 members of Flying Wallendas' high-wire act killed when their 7-person pyramid collapsed during a performance in Detroit
  • Jan 30 Laughter epidemic begins at a girls' mission school in Kashasha, Tanganyika, goes on to affect 14 schools and over 1000 people
  • Jan 31 General Charles P Cabell, USAF, ends term as deputy director of CIA
  • Jan 31 Samuel Gravely assumes command of destroyer escort "USS Falgout", first African American to command a combat ship
  • Feb 1 "New Faces of '62" opens at Alvin Theater NYC for 28 performances
  • Feb 1 MLB's National League releases its first 162-game schedule due to expansion (18 games between opponents)
  • Feb 2 1st pole vault over 16' (4.88m) (John Uelses-16', Melrose Games)
  • Feb 2 8 of 9 planets align for 1st time in 400 years
  • Feb 2 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • Feb 3 John Uelses pole vaults record 489 cm
  • Feb 3 US President John F. Kennedy bans all trade with Cuba except for food & drugs
  • Feb 4 "Gay Life" closes at Shubert Theater NYC after 113 performances
  • Feb 4 Russian newspaper Izvestia reports baseball is an old Russian game
  • Feb 4 US female Figure Skating championship won by Barbara Roles
  • Feb 4 US male Figure Skating championship won by Monty Hoyt
  • Feb 5 French President de Gaulle calls for Algeria's independence
  • Feb 5 Suit to bar Englewood NJ from "racial segregated" schools, filed
  • Feb 5 Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn all within 16 degrees
  • Feb 6 Schoolman Athletic Field in the Bronx named
  • Feb 7 Gas explosion in Luisanthal coal mine Voelklingen Germany kills 298
  • Feb 7 US President JFK begins blockade of Cuba by banning all Cuban imports and exports.
  • Feb 8 KACB TV channel 3 in San Angelo, TX (NBC) begins broadcasting
  • Feb 8 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Feb 8 In Paris, 8 people killed at a protest against independence for the French colony Algeria
  • Feb 9 Jamaica signs agreement to become independent
  • Feb 9 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Feb 10 Jim Beatty sets American indoor mile record (3:58.9) in LA
  • Feb 10 USSR swaps spy Francis Gary Power to US for Rudolph Abel
  • Feb 12 Bus boycott starts in Macon, Georgia

Historic Event

Feb 14 US 1st lady Jacqueline Kennedy conducts White House tour on TV

  • Feb 15 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

Music Premiere

Feb 16 Darius Milhaud's 12th Symphony premieres

  • Feb 16 "La Jetée", French film directed by Chris Marker, starring Hélène Chatelain, Davos Hanich and Jacques Ledoux, is released
  • Feb 17 Storm in Hamburg kills 265
  • Feb 18 France & Algerian Muslims negotiate truce to end 7 year war
  • Feb 18 4th Daytona 500: Race winner Fireball Roberts dominates the event, leading 144 of the 200 laps
  • Feb 19 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Feb 21 Minister De Pous confirms natural gas reserves in Groningen, Netherlands
  • Feb 22 Philadelphia center Wilt Chamberlain sets NBA record with 34 free-throw attempts (converts 19) in Warriors 139-121 win over St. Louis Hawks at Philadelphia Civic Center
  • Feb 23 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Feb 24 "New Faces of '62" closes at Alvin Theater NYC after 28 performances
  • Feb 24 "Sail Away" closes at Broadhurst Theater NYC after 167 performances
  • Feb 24 General mobilization in Indonesia over New Guinea
  • Feb 24 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Feb 25 India Congress Party wins elections
  • Feb 25 Mike O'Hara completes record 97th marathon
  • Feb 25 Philadelphia center Wilt Chamberlain scores 67 points against NY Knicks at Philadelphia Civic Center for the second successive year; Warriors lose 149-135
  • Feb 26 Arthur Kopit's "Oh, Dad, Poor Dad . . ." premieres in NYC
  • Feb 26 US Supreme court disallows race separation on public transportation

Assassination Attempt

Feb 27 South Vietnam President Ngô Đình Diệm's palace bombed by dissident air pilots in a failed assassination attempt

  • Feb 28 WMGM-AM in New York City changes call letters to WHN
  • Mar 1 American Airlines 707 plunges nose first into Jamaica Bay, NY, killing 95
  • Mar 1 Kresge Corporation openes the first Kmart store in Garden City, Michigan
  • Mar 1 US and British nuclear test experiment in Nevada
  • Mar 2 President John F. Kennedy announces US will resume above ground nuclear testing
  • Mar 2 Philadelphia center Wilt Chamberlain scores 100 points, most ever by an NBA player in a single game, in Warriors' 169-147 win over NY Knicks in Hershey; 36-of-63 from field, 28-of-32 from free-throw line
  • Mar 2 In Burma, the army led by General Ne Win seizes power in a coup
  • Mar 3 British Antarctic Territory forms
  • Mar 3 9th ACC Men's Basketball Tournament: Wake Forest beats Clemson, 77-66
  • Mar 4 AEC announces 1st atomic power plant in Antarctica in operation
  • Mar 5 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Mar 6 St Louis vote to build a new downtown stadium for the Cardinals
  • Mar 6 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site
  • Mar 6 US promise Thailand assistance against communist aggression
  • Mar 7 The Beatles made their broadcasting debut on BBC radio
  • Mar 7 Launch of OSO 1, 1st astronomy satellite (solar flare data)
  • Mar 7 Ground-breaking report "Smoking and Health" published by the British Royal College of Physicians, first major report to warn of the dangers of smoking

Television Debut

Mar 8 Beatles, with Pete Best, TV debut (perform "Dream Baby" on BBC)

  • Mar 8 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

Historic Event

Mar 9 Egyptian President Nasser declares Gaza belongs to Palestinians

  • Mar 9 US advisors in South-Vietnam join the fight
  • Mar 10 Due to its no black policy, Phillies leave Jack Tar Harrison Hotel & move to Rocky Point Motel, 20 miles outside Clearwater, Florida
  • Mar 12 Dutch Premier De Quay announces secret talks with Indonesia
  • Mar 13 Yugoslavia grants 1,000 prisoners amnesty
  • Mar 14 Disarmament conference opens in Geneva without France

NHL Record

Mar 14 Red Wings' forward Gordie Howe becomes second player in NHL history to score 500 career goals in Detroit's 3-2 loss to NY Rangers

  • Mar 15 Richard Rodger's musical "No Strings" opens at 84th St Theater NYC for 580 performances
  • Mar 15 Five research groups announce the discovery of anti-matter
  • Mar 15 Donald Jackson of Canada is 1st to land a triple lutz ice skate jump
  • Mar 15 KATU TV channel 2 in Portland, OR (ABC) begins broadcasting
  • Mar 15 Wilt Chamberlain is 1st to score 4,000 pts in an NBA season
  • Mar 16 1st launching of Titan 2-rocket
  • Mar 16 US Super-Constellation disappears above Pacific Ocean, kills 167
  • Mar 18 Algerian War ends after 7½ yrs (250,000 die), Ben Bella flees

Music History

Mar 18 Dmitri Shostakovich becomes member of Supreme Soviet of USSR

  • Mar 18 7th Eurovision Song Contest: Isabelle Aubret for France wins singing "Un premier amour" in Luxembourg
  • Mar 19 "All American" opens at Winter Garden Theater NYC for 80 performances
  • Mar 19 Archbishop Suenens of Mechelen-Brussels appointed cardinal
  • Mar 20 Sjoukje Dijkstra becomes world champion figure skater
  • Mar 21 Yogi the bear becomes the 1st creature to be ejected at supersonic speeds by the US military testing ejection seats
  • Mar 21 Dutch RC bishop Beckers declares himself in favor of birth control
  • Mar 21 Philadelphia Phillies retire pitcher Robin Roberts' # 36

Music Premiere

Mar 22 Musical "I Can Get It For You Wholesale" starring Barbra Streisand in her Broadway debut, opens at Shubert Theater, NYC; runs for 300 performances

  • Mar 23 JFK visits San Francisco
  • Mar 23 Nawab of Pataudi captains India cricket v WI age 21 years 77 days
  • Mar 23 Wake Forest coach "Bones" McKinney becomes 2nd person to play and coach
  • Mar 23 William DeWitt buys Cincinnati Reds for $4,625,000
  • Mar 24 24th NCAA Men's Basketball Championship: Cincinnati beats Ohio State, 71-59; Bearcats win back-to-back National titles
  • Mar 24 Emile Griffith beats Benny " Kid" Paret by TKO in 12th round in welterweight boxing title fight at MSG, NYC; Paret dies 10 days later; first use of television slow motion replay
  • Mar 25 "Family Affair" closes at Billy Rose Theater NYC after 65 performances
  • Mar 25 French OAS-leader ex-general Jouhaud arrested
  • Mar 26 US Supreme Court backs 1-man-1-vote apportionment of seats in state legistature
  • Mar 27 Ann Jellicoe's play "Knack" premieres in London
  • Mar 27 Archbishop Rummel ends race segregation in New Orleans Catholic schools

NHL Record

Mar 27 NHL Montreal Canadiens goaltender Jacques Plante ties record winning 6th NHL Vezina trophy

  • Mar 28 Devastating 8 for 6 spell by West Indian spin bowler Lance Gibbs gives home side innings & 30 run 3rd Test win over India in Bridgetown
  • Mar 28 Military coup in Syria, President Nazim al-Kudsi flees
  • Mar 29 Argentine President Arturo Frondizi flees from the army

TV Show Appearance

Mar 29 Jack Paar's final appearance on the "The Tonight Show"

  • Mar 31 116th Grand National: Fred Winter aboard 28/1 shot Kilmore wins by 10 lengths from Wyndburgh
  • Apr 2 The first official Panda crossing is opened outside Waterloo station, London.

Sports History

Apr 3 American jockey Eddie Arcaro retires after 31 years (24,092 races)

  • Apr 3 Lt General Marshall S Carter, USA, becomes deputy director of CIA
  • Apr 5 Herb Gardner's "Thousand Clowns" premieres in NYC
  • Apr 5 Mgr J Daems appointed bishop of Antwerp
  • Apr 5 NASA civilian pilot Neil Armstrong takes X-15 to 54,600 m
  • Apr 5 St Bernard Tunnel finished-Swiss/Italians workers shake hands
  • Apr 7 Indian cricketer Polly Umrigar slams 172 not out vs West Indies at Port-of-Spain in 248 minutes

Historic Event

Apr 7 Yugoslav ex-president Milovan Djilas returns to jail

  • Apr 8 Accords of Evian (Algeria) accepted by referendum in France

US Masters Golf

Apr 9 26th US Masters Tournament, Augusta National GC: Arnold Palmer wins the 3rd of his 4 Masters titles in an 18 hole Monday playoff with Gary Player and Dow Finsterwald; tournament's first 3-way playoff

Academy Awards

Apr 9 34th Academy Awards: "West Side Story" (Best Picture, Director, and 8 more), Sophia Loren (Two Women) & Maximilian Schell (Judgement At Nuremberg) win

  • Apr 9 US President JohnF. Kennedy throws out 1st ball at Washington's new DC Stadium
  • Apr 10 52,564 fans attend first MLB game at LA's Dodger Stadium at Chavez Ravine, a 6-3 loss to the Cincinnati Reds
  • Apr 10 Houston Colt .45s make their MLB debut with an 11-2 win over the Chicago Cubs at Colt Stadium; outfielder Román Mejías hits a pair of 3-run homers
  • Apr 11 New York Mets make a losing debut
  • Apr 12 San Mateo County withdraws from BART (San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit) district

Baseball Record

Apr 13 Stan Musial scores his 1,869th run, a new NL record

  • Apr 13 US steel industry forced to give up price increases
  • Apr 14 Demonstration for sovereign status of New Guinea in Amsterdam

Election of Interest

Apr 14 Georges Pompidou becomes Prime Minister of France after the resignation of Michel Debré

  • Apr 14 France retains the Five Nations Rugby Championship with an 11-0 win over Ireland at Stade Colombes, Paris
  • Apr 15 US national debt above $300,000,000,000
  • Apr 16 Brazil nationalizes US businesses

Film & TV History

Apr 16 Walter Cronkite begins anchoring CBS Evening News

  • Apr 16 66th Boston Marathon won by Eino Oksanen of Finland in 2:23:48; second straight win and 3rd title overall
  • Apr 18 16th NBA Championship: Boston Celtics beat LA Lakers, 4 games to 3